How to ease the pressure of funding your big day
“I’m getting married! I am in the process of planning our dream wedding and honeymoon but my fiancé is very cost conscious and worried that we will end up spending too much. What advice do you have for us?
Congratulations! Understandably, the pressure of funding a wedding and a honeymoon can lead to stress and anxiety for many couples but with some careful planning, you can stop the costs from spiraling out of control. HSBC has experts on hand to provide free financial planning advice*, but in the meantime consider the following:
Setting a budget
When working out how much you want to spend on your wedding, it’s important to take into consideration other financial goals you may be working towards, such as buying a house, moving to a bigger property, saving to have children, etc. This will help you prioritise your savings and spending habits for all of your financial goals. Once you determine what your wedding and honeymoon budget is, stick to it. Although you may already have your dream wedding and honeymoon planned out in theory, you may not be able to afford everything that you want.
Next, begin to prioritise your wedding and honeymoon spending; list everything you need to budget in order of importance and cost each item accordingly. To help keep track of this, consider using a wedding-budget planner. There are many tools available online or you can create your own using an Excel spreadsheet. Include different categories such as transport, rings, clothing, venue, music, photography, flowers, food and drink, and columns such as amount budgeted, total cost, difference, date it needs to be paid by, deposit and balance due. If you can’t afford everything, adjust your list and not your budget.
Getting your finances together
Before you start booking venues, buying a dress, etc. work out what you can afford to spend and how you will be paying for it. Your payment source can vary.
Take into consideration any financial contributions you may receive from either of your families.
If you’ve been planning your wedding for a while and you’re saving a large amount over a long period of time, you might want to consider a fixed-term savings account to get the best rates of interest.
If you need to borrow money to pay for the big day, you should first think seriously about how much you need. Ask yourself: can you afford the repayments? How long do you want to spend repaying them? Are you borrowing in the most cost-effective way? You can borrow money via credit cards, personal loans, overdrafts or a personal line of credit.
Credit cards can be used to borrow money and repay the balance over time, but you will have to pay interest. However, there are benefits to using credit cards. The HSBC Credit Card Reward Programme offers an extensive list of rewards. With every dollar spent you earn points that can be redeemed for the reward of your choice. Your options include gift certificates to local and overseas retail stores, airfare, hotels or dining. You can even use reward points to pay yourself with cash back. Redeeming your rewards is a great way to cover some of your wedding or honeymoon expenses.
If you need to borrow a larger amount and you’re looking for better rates, you may want to consider taking out a personal loan.
You may also want to think about arranging an overdraft. This can act as a “buffer” in case you go over budget and can provide you with peace of mind when lots of payments are going out of your account. Interest and an arrangement fee will be applied to your overdraft.
Personal Line of Credit
A personal line of credit is another “buffer” option. It is a long term unsecured borrowing facility setup as a separate account in your name. You will receive a debit card attached to this account so you can make purchases and access ATMs. With a Personal Line of Credit you only make repayments towards the amount you spend/outstanding balance.
*Free Financial Planning with HSBC
If you are uncertain how to develop a financial plan on your own, HSBC can help! Our approach takes you through the complete financial planning process, at no cost to you. We’ll work with you to understand your particular circumstances and your financial ambitions. From there, we provide you with solutions on how to manage, grow and protect your savings to achieve your goals.
To make a free Financial Planning appointment, visit http://www.hsbc.bm/planning or call 299-5959.
Issued by HSBC Bank Bermuda Limited which is licensed to conduct Banking and Investment Business by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.